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Press Release


Member for Melbourne Ports


Thursday 12 August 1999




The embarrassment and determination of the Government to prevent disclosure of information about the making of grants under the Fede ration and Cultural Heritage program led to the Speaker suspending the Federal Member for Melbourne Ports, Michael Danby, for one hour today.


Mr Danby had sought details From the Minister, Peter McGauran, about the failure of the Federation Cultural and Heritage Fund being allocated to the historic Emerald Hill Precinct in South Melbourne.


“The Government is acting like it has something to hide”, Mr Danby said.


“The Auditor General’s Administration of Grants Better Practice Guide provides that any grants assessment process ‘should be documented with reasons for decision...accessible under freedom of information provisions’,” he said.


“Instead of allowing full disclosure of the details of the grants, the Government has provided documents that look like they’ve been released by the Pentagon, with black marks blocking out every bit of information dealing with the assessment process.


“I was simply pointing out this fact to the House when I was excused from the service of the House.


When in Opposition, the Treasurer said on the PM Program on 1 March, 1994 that:


Well look, if we were in government, we would have proper disclosure and material that should be available under Freedom of Information would be available?


“Well, Treasurer, look — you are in Governm ent. Do you still stand by your words? If so, perhaps you could fill in the blanks on the attached form,” Mr Danby said.


For further information: Michael Danby (02) 6277 4713










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